“Big Mama’s Pears”-My Flash Memoir in American Athenaeum, Published 1 April 2013

FrontPorchCoverA worthy and wonderful part of Sword & Saga Press, American Athenaeum has released its latest edition, a cultural magazine this time centered on the front porch, a nostalgic part of the US.

In the very small town where one of my great-grandmothers came to live, the front porch was a place you might have spent significant time on after working during the early part of the day. At night, when it was too hot inside the house for any comfort, it was a place where you’d sleep at night, lined up next to each other.

My flash memoir is about home life, a time in a family’s history of work and leisure that combined together, and one which was multi-generational for as a “mid-range” generational now, being in my forties, though there are very few older ones of us now and absolutely less so of the younger ones who even know of such times or have experienced it. It being the knowledge and teaching of old ways of preserving, of the things that sustained life. The things that were hands on knowledge and ability.

My flash memoir “Big Mama’s Pears” was accepted by and published in the online and print version of American Athenaeum, and though a short piece, detailed my love and memory of someone and something that was one of the most wonderful of my youth, it is very special to me.

Description: “It wasn’t so long ago when the front porch was the main feature of a home. Connected to the sidewalk, to the neighborhood, to the world-at-large, the front porch was a destination. Families gathered to discuss big ideas, to share heartache and joy, to greet neighbors with news. But then something changed and the community-centered feature become replaced. (Any guess with what? You’ll have to read the issue to find out for sure.) This issue is a tribute to the long-lost artifact, the once-centerpiece of the family and community. We’ve recreated a front porch especially for you, complete with a museum-like experience for the everyday reader.”

Some writers you’ll encounter: J. Patrick Lewis (US Children’s Poet Laureate 2011-13), Paula Brackston author of The Witch’s DaughterRichie Swanson, Claude Clayton Smith, Carmen Welsh, Red Haircrow, Robert, Kingett, Nandini Pandya, Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingde, Mary Buchinger, Steven Ray Smith, and many more. Cover photo by Christopher Woods.

  • Published: April 1, 2013
  • ISBN-10: 148397989X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1483979892
  • Available on Amazon in print & e-book formats, and through their website.

Excerpt from my flash memoir

“At my home in Germany, I sat eating a crunchy pear pondering why I prefer that kind over more ripe, juicy fruits and realized it’s because they remind me of my great-grandmother, and most especially of a late summer day she spent with my family in Alabama when I was nine years old, over thirty years ago. In my mind’s eye, I see her sitting in the cool shadows of our kitchen, near the screen door leading to the backyard, a bowl of pears in her lap while she peels the hard, green fruit with sure, patient hands, pears which had come from an old tree in our backyard….”